Home beer brewing club 'thriving' under lockdown

Ashley Carr drinking some of his home brewed beer.

Ashley Carr drinking some of his home brewed beer. - Credit: Ashley Carr

A home beer brewing club in Norwich has seen its membership soar since the outbreak of coronavirus as people seek to recreate their favourite drinks at home.

The number of people joining Norwich Amateur Brewers (NAB) began to rise during the first lockdown and has now increased by a third. 

Ashley Carr, who set up NAB five years ago, from Melton Constable, said restrictions have encouraged people to be more creative and compared the appeal of home brewing to cooking.

Ashley Carr's home brewery kit in Melton Constable.

Ashley Carr's home brewery kit in Melton Constable. - Credit: Ashley Carr

He added: "The best analogy is cooking. Lots of people began to cook from scratch because of boredom during the pandemic and that was coupled with lots of food based TV programmes.

"I think some people thought 'I don't want to bake but actually I wouldn't mind making a pint' and then sought out home brewing groups. We have been surviving and thriving."


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As well as a surge in popularity, Mr Carr said 2020 has allowed people to become better brewers.

He said: "People have got better at brewing because there has been a lot of opportunity and time. And the best way to become a better brewer is to brew."

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NAB, who would normally meet at the Coachmakers Arms in Norwich regularly, have been forced to adapt due to the pandemic.

Among changes were video chats, including with industry experts such as Adnams head brewer Fergus Fitzgerald, remote beer tastings and a beer advent calendar.

Mr Carr said: "If anything we have been communicating more due to online platforms. It is almost like live conversation and people are getting to know each other more.

"The rest of the adaptions and innovations we have made have also meant that people have become better brewers.

"With all the stuff we've had going on it has meant that people have got up to speed and progressed very quickly as they are getting constant feedback."

NAB also celebrated a triumphant year last year when they took home multiple medals at the National Homebrew Championships in Bristol. 

For more information visit Norwich Amateur Brewers' website by visiting norwichamateurbrewers.co.uk



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